What do exchange students do

Organizational information

Information for exchange students

As soon as you have arrived in Potsdam or Berlin, please inform us of your arrival and your address via the Moveon portal *. We need your German address, among other things, so that we can send you important documents by post.

* You need your existing login data for the Moveon portal (please do not register again, but log in).

Arrival and living in Potsdam

Arrival and living in Potsdam

What do I have to take into account when entering Germany?

If you are traveling to Germany from abroad and have been in a SARS-CoV-2 risk area within 10 days of entry, you must in front the entry into Germany one Digital entry registration to complete. Be sure to save the confirmation of registration or print it out. The transport companies and / or German authorities can ask you about it. Your travel and contact details will be forwarded to the health authority responsible for your whereabouts, which can then contact you.

Since January 13th, 2021, the following applies: For travelers from a high incidence area, the test is up to 48 hours in front mandatory entry. The test result must be in German, English or French. You can find information on the recognized test procedures here: RKI Information

Danger! Entry ban from virus variant areas

From March 30th, 2021: For those arriving by plane, a test is mandatory before departure!

Please inform yourself absolutely direct Before you leave for Germany, whether your country of origin is currently listed as a virus variant area.


We expressly recommend that you have sufficient cash with you for the initial period in order to cover all costs for groceries, hygiene items, household items and other expenses.

It is to be expected that you will not be able to do your laundry during the quarantine period. Therefore, when packing, you should make sure that you pack enough clean laundry for a period of 8-14 days.

In addition, we advise you to take a well-stocked first-aid kit with you with the necessary medication, personal hygiene items (shower gel, shampoo, soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, electronic thermometer, etc.) as well as a sufficient number of towels.

"What do I need?"

Mouth and nose protection (medical masks) - Attention: only FFP2 masks in Berlin
Hygiene items (shampoo, shower gel, toothbrush, etc.)
· Linen and towels
First aid kit (medicine and thermometer)
· LAN cable and adapter, PC
· A sufficient amount of cash

Shortening the quarantine time

People who live in Potsdam or Berlin can shorten the 10-day quarantine under the following conditions:

  • You do a test in Germany at the earliest 5 days after your arrival (antigen tests currently cost around € 30-50, PCR tests around € 60-120). Free antigen tests are only possible for persons who have already been registered in Germany at the registration location.
  • You send a copy of the negative test result to the health authority responsible for your place of residence - stating your full name, your address in Germany, your date of entry and a reason for shortening the quarantine period
    • Potsdam Health Department: 0331 289-2351, Berliner Straße 150 a, Building P, 14467 Potsdam, [email protected]
    • Berlin health authorities

Your way to the university

Here you can find out the best way to get to the University of Potsdam.

How can I find support during the quarantine?

If you come to Germany from a SARS-CoV-2 risk area, one applies to you 10-day mandatory quarantine immediately after entering the country. This means that you have to go straight to your accommodation immediately after entering the country. You can use public transport to do this.

You are not allowed to leave your home during the 10-day quarantine, not even for a short time and not even for shopping. In addition, you are not allowed to receive any visitors during this time.

If you need support during the quarantine, for example for shopping, please contact one of the following help offers in good time:

· International Office
Erasmus Student Network (ESN) Potsdam: [email protected]/ WhatsAPP group ESN: https://chat.whatsapp.com/CQh3Gf4XlEjJ0890VKej3i
· Your buddy, if you participate in the University of Potsdam's buddy program

The handover of the purchases will take place in compliance with the current hygiene regulations, in particular while maintaining the required safety distance. The student tutors will clarify the exact details as well as the shopping lists with you personally.

Information on the assumption of quarantine-related costs for international students and doctoral candidates can be found under this link.

What do I do in the event of a medical emergency?

In acute medical emergencies the ambulance can also be called to the local hospital. You can reach the ambulance service on the emergency number 112. In the case of complaints that are not acutely life-threatening, you can contact the medical emergency service (www.kvbb.de) outside the office hours of the resident doctors on 116 117.

At Toothache you can call the dental emergency service Potsdam (www.kzvlb.de/bereitschaftsdienst) or the dental emergency service Berlin (www.kzv-berlin.de/patienten/notdienst/zahnaerztlicher-notdienst). Please note that there is no dental care in the clinic.

You can reach the ophthalmological on-call service in Potsdam on 0180 558 222 344 5 and in Berlin on 030 450 552 000.

If you are concerned that you have contracted the coronavirus, please inform the International Office and consult the following websites:

Recommendations for action by the state of Berlin

Homepage of the Robert Koch Institute

I will live in a student residence in Potsdam. How do I get my key?

When you have paid the deposit, the caretaker will give you your rental contract and key for the dormitory room, unless you are obliged to quarantine.

Otherwise the following steps are necessary:

  • You must have completed the affidavit to clarify where to carry out the necessary 10-day quarantine. Positive respondents (with information on the day of entry and the place of quarantine) will immediately receive an offer by email
  • You are asked to report to the relevant clerk by email at least 5 days before your arrival

You also need to move in:

  • a negative PCR test (not older than 48 hours upon arrival)
  • the letter from the health department about the lifting of the quarantine requirement

Early moves by shortening the quarantine period are only possible with written information from the Potsdam Health Department. Simply submitting a negative test is not enough.

You can look for a pension or a hotel or similar for the period of the quarantine (please bring a negative PCR test with you!).

Information for tenants of the student union Postdam

I live in the dormitory in Potsdam. How can I activate Internet access?

In this document you will find a detailed description of how to conclude the contract for the Internet. You can do this shortly before your arrival so that the Internet is immediately available when you move in.

Do I have to register with the authorities?

You can find detailed information on registering with the residents' registration office or the immigration office in our guide for program students.

Students from risk areas must also report to the health department.

How do I activate my UP account and what do I need it for?

The central university account (UP account) is your personal identifier for access to various IT services. This includes:

  • Webmailbox and Mail.UP
  • WLAN (eduroam)
  • Box.UP
  • Moodle
  • E-learning platform Moodle.UP
  • Media.UP
  • VPN
  • ZOOM
  • and many more services

Before using it for the first time, you must activate your account on the Account.UP website. However, this is only possible after receipt of your semester fee!

Follow the steps to activate your account. Please pay attention to the input of the data as in your identity card / passport. You can also find information on account activation directly on the personalized cover letter under the Potsdam University Chip Card (PUCK).

How do I get my PUCK and what do I need it for?

The PUCK (PotsdamerUniversitätsChipKarte) will be sent to you by post with other important documents if it cannot be handed over in person. It serves as:

  • Student ID
  • library card
  • Semesterticket - ticket for any means of local transport in the state of Brandenburg and Berlin (VBB)
  • Cash card - copying and printing in the PC pool (ZIM), payment in the canteen and cafeteria

What you have to do if the PUCK is stolen or lost, how you can use it as a cash card and other topics can be found in the “Guide for program students”.

What other documents do I need and how do I get my information folder?

Your information folder with other important documents will be sent to you by post, provided that it cannot be handed over in person. In your information folder you will also find your iTAN list, which you need to attend the courses in PULS. Due to the pandemic, some of the documents featured in the video will only be made available to you online.

You will also find a summary of relevant information on starting your studies in the brochure “Guide for program students”.

How do I find courses?

Who can I contact with academic questions or questions about my schedule?

The exchange coordinators in the institutes and faculty tutors are at your disposal for this purpose. Please make sure to attend the meeting with your exchange coordinator before the start of the lecture period.

How does the online course work?

Many events take place digitally using the ZOOM software. Details on how to use ZOOM can be found on the University of Potsdam's homepage.

Where can I find out about news at the University of Potsdam due to the corona pandemic?

Please read through the central FAQs on the subject of Corona.

Only applies to exchange students

Can I cancel or postpone my studies at the University of Potsdam?

You can submit a written request for revocation by March 31, 2021 in order to get the money back from the student union fee.

If you would like to postpone your stay to the winter semester 2021/22 or the summer semester 2022, please contact us.

Only applies to exchange students

German courses at the Zessko

You do not need a placement test for the beginners course. Otherwise you have to take an online placement test and can then register for a course within the enrollment period. You can find detailed information on this information sheet.

The German courses at the Zessko are not for German studies students.

Courses for German studies students

There are special German studies courses for exchange students in German studies. You can find detailed information about the courses and their occupancy in this information sheet.

Language tandem of Zessko

You can find detailed information about the language tandem on the Zessko website.